The Incredibles (2004)

incredImagine a world where superheros are the norm, where it’s quite common to see three or four in the course of your day. In “The Incredibles,” that’s just how things are, or rather, how they were. Once upon a time, there was a superhero for every occasion, and evildoers had no chance. But one day, Mr. Incredible saved the life of a man who was trying to commit suicide, and that man decided to sue. Things went downhill from there, and soon all the supers had to go into hiding. Mr. Incredible and his wife, Elastigirl, became Robert and Helen Parr, voiced by Craig T. Nelson and Holly Hunter. They set up a quiet suburban lifestyle, Robert as an insurance salesman and Helen as a homemaker, and have three children, Violet, Dash, and Jack Jack. Violet and Dash have inherited super powers from their parents – Violet can go invisible and Dash can move very quickly, but Jack Jack doesn’t seem to have any powers at all, to the great relief of his parents. It’s just too hard to try and hide them.

Life is good, but it’s boring. Robert misses the days when he would run around, saving the world, being everyone’s hero. When he gets a phone call asking him to come help stop a crazy killing machine, he goes willingly, and then goes again, and again. Helen begins to suspect that something’s up, and she even wonders if there’s another woman in Robert’s life. Going to their superhero costume designer, she gets the clue she needed – Robert has been in to have his suit mended. He’s at it again.

Helen goes to his rescue, leaving Jack Jack with a sitter and taking Dash and Violet along for the ride, although somewhat against her will, as they stowed away. When they find Robert, they discover that he has been trapped by an old acquaintance, a boy he knew years ago, a boy who holds a grudge.

This movie is filled with action, adventure, and humor. I did find it a little violent for a very young viewer, but my older ones loved it (and so did I.) My only real complaint is that our costume designer did take the Lord’s name in vain.

There are so many moments of comedy in this film. At one point, Bob’s best friend, Frozone (voiced by Samuel L. Jackson) is looking for his supersuit so he can go help Bob. Frozone’s wife wants him to stay home with her. He tells her, “This is for the greater good.” Her response? “I am your wife. I am the greatest good you will ever have.”

It’s no wonder that “The Incredibles” has done so well in the box office, in the video store, with merchandise – it’s one of those films you’ll sit down to watch with your family again and again.

(This film is rated PG.)

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